War on corruption now picks pace online with new portal
Posted Wednesday, April 18 2012 at 18:24
The site administrator who also acts as moderator, Collins Baswony, goes through the postings to ensure that none of the users have revealed their identities or used profane language.
“So far, we have received 560 bribe reports across the entire country and the cumulative value is just over Sh15.2 million,” states Mr Baswony.
“The fact that it’s anonymous gives our users the necessary confidence to relate their experiences without fear of victimisation.
ipaidabribe.or.ke is mirrored on a similar initiative started in India two years ago where Indian citizens used it to map out corruption cases.
“When I was putting together the concept for IPAB I found out that there was another website in India with the same name so I made a request for the source codes and was given the green light to set up under a similar domain,” states Mr Rangui.
And just like in India where the website has been able to change the way the Ministry of Transport does business, Mr Rangui is committed to make an impact on at least one key government institution that is prone to corruption.
“We all know that corruption is endemic and we appreciate the roots it has in the Kenyan culture so eliminating it totally is a long term endeavour. We however believe that by the reports made on IPAB Kenyans shall take note and something positive will come out of it,” he said.
To help them collect more stories, the website is incorporating a mobile platform to make it possible for Kenyans to log in cases through their cell phones.
Mr Ragui is however wary of the flipside of whistle-blowing especially on an anonymous and interactive forum as IPAB and is quick to assure users that the website is free of any malicious intent against a particular person or institution.
“Some have expressed concern that the website can be used maliciously by disgruntled employees or individuals with personal vendettas against others,” he says.
“The website is not in place out of any political or personal motives and these are all experiences that most Kenyans go through.”
Mr Ragui hopes to take the website regional and is looking to launch the same application in Tanzania, Malawi and Ghana.